Feb. 9, 2010
STANFORD, Calif. -- Bradford M. Freeman Director of Football and head coach Jim Harbaugh announced today the appointment of three new members to Stanford’s coaching staff
Vic Fangio, who has spent the previous 24 years coaching in the NFL, most recently with the Baltimore Ravens, has been named defensive coordinator. Randy Hart, who served as the defensive line coach last season at Notre Dame after a 21-year stay at the University of Washington, has been named defensive line coach, while Brian Polian has been appointed special teams coordinator after serving in the same capacity for the last five seasons at Notre Dame.
Additionally, Ron Lynn, who has served as assistant head coach and co-defensive coordinator for the last two seasons, will assume the position of director of player development.
Fangio, Hart and Polian bring a combined 84 years of coaching experience to the Stanford staff.
Fangio (left) comes to Stanford after a four-year stay with the Baltimore Ravens, where he served as a special assistant to the head coach with additional responsibilities with the Ravens linebackers. A 24-year NFL coaching veteran, Fangio also has 11 years experience as defensive coordinator for three teams, including the Carolina Panthers (1995-98), Indianapolis Colts (1999-01) and Houston Texans (2002-05).
He also spent nine seasons as the linebackers coach of the New Orleans Saints from 1986-94, where he helped develop the vaunted “Dome Patrol” linebacker unit that featured four All-Pro selections in Rickey Jackson, Pat Swilling, Sam Mills and Vaughn Johnson. The group was recently voted the best linebacker unit in NFL history by the NFL Network.
Bleacher Report.com recently tabbed Fangio 24th on its list of the Top 25 Defensive Minds in NFL History.
“I have competed against Vic’s defenses as a player,” said Harbaugh. “I have admired his career from afar, and also up close with the Baltimore Ravens. He is a master teacher and one of the best defensive minds in the history of the game. We are truly blessed to call him an associate here at Stanford. Vic Fangio is a stone cold ball coach.”
The 2010 season will mark Hart’s (left) 41st year as a collegiate coach, with stops at six other schools, including Tampa, Iowa State, Ohio State, Washington and Notre Dame. He has been a member of 22 bowl teams in his collegiate coaching career, including six Rose Bowl squads.
Hart returns to the Pac-10 Conference after a one-year stay as the defensive line coach at Notre Dame. Prior to joining the Irish staff, Hart spent 21 years as the defensive line coach at the University of Washington, where he helped guide the Huskies to 12 bowl appearances, including three straight Rose Bowls from 1991-93.
Four of the eight best single-season defensive rushing averages in school history occurred under Hart’s watch at Washington. He also coached 14 first-team All-Pac-10 Conference players, including 11 who were selected in the NFL Draft. Hart developed four All-Americans, three Morris Trophy winners and two players Pac-10 Players of the Year.
A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Hart is a 1970 graduate of Ohio State and was a three-year letterwinner for the Buckeyes and a member of its 1969 Rose Bowl and national championship team.
“Watching tape last year, we felt that Notre Dame had the best coached defensive line that we played against all year, especially in terms of technique and fundamentals,” said Harbaugh. “Randy also has great familiarity with the Pac-10, as well as an unmatched enthusiasm. I have not met anybody with as much enthusiasm as Randy Hart.”
One of the bright young coaches in the collegiate ranks today, Polian (right) arrives on The Farm after serving as special teams coordinator at Notre Dame for the last five seasons. Throughout his tenure in South Bend, the Irish special teams were some of the best in the nation. Under his guidance, the Irish boasted the best kickoff return coverage in the nation in 2008, allowing just 16.5 yards per return.
Polian graduated from John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio in 1997. He was a three-year varsity letterwinner as a linebacker and was an All-Ohio Athletic Conference selection in 1996.
Polian’s father, Bill, is the president of the Indianapolis Colts and his older brother Chris, serves as the team’s vice president for football operations. His younger brother Dennis is the assistant to the head coach with the Minnesota Vikings.
“For the last three years, we have matched up against Brian’s special teams at Notre Dame,” said Harbaugh. “I vividly remember the closely contested battles from all three years, and there were definitely times Brian got the best of us. Brian also left a huge footprint on the recruiting trail wherever he went, and we decided if you can beat ‘em, join ‘em.”